Local boxer putting in the work to become a champion

Waxahachie’s Marvin Ferman overcomes setbacks to climb amateur ranks

Patty Hullett
Daily Light correspondent
Boxer Marvin Ferman shows photos of himself before (left) and after (right) starting a grueling regimen to lose weight and get into boxing shape.

Waxahachie's Marvin (“Tank”) Ferman, is an amateur boxer trying to make his way up the ranks in one of the area boxing minor leagues called Border Wars, that is hosted by “The Boxing Voice” (a/k/a “TBV”).

This growing boxing organization can be found on its own website, and it says (according to their advertisement) – “Thaboxingvoice.com is the top source for the latest amateur boxing news, hot topics, radio show podcasts, and interviews of the top stars and hot prospects in the sport today.”

Ferman currently holds the WBC and WBA championship belts, as well as an IBO Medal, as part of the affiliation with The Border Wars. But in the meantime, until he is able to move up to “pro” status, he continues his full time job as a Diesel Technician. His career involves working on heavy-duty, over-the-road trucks — such as tractor trailers, commercial buses, and as well as garbage trucks.

Overcoming three major health issues

For this 26-year-old, who was raised in Irving, things have not always been easy. In fact, he has had to fight through some major medical setbacks during his lifetime.

“When I was 4 years old, I had a horrible, unexplained infection in my right leg that my doctors said there was nothing they could really do for me," Ferman said. "They couldn’t even announce a diagnosis for my parents – because they themselves didn't know what exactly was wrong with me. Finally, they determined that in order to get the infection from spreading, they would need to amputate my leg. Thankfully, God had a much better plan for me.

"I remained in the hospital for three months, and I was hooked up to almost every kind of machine you can think of. Later, I was then moved back home where I had nurses watching over me 24/7. The amount of medications and supplies needed to take care of me was so much that we had a personal contract with a close-by pharmacy, so I could receive everything that I needed in a hassle-free and timely manner.

"My leg was split open – from front to back – in order to keep the infection down. At the tender age of 4, I wasn’t out playing with friends or getting ready to start kindergarten like most children my age. Instead, my family and I were doing everything we could to keep my leg from being amputated. Once I finally started getting better, I even had to learn how to walk again.”

He continues, “Fast forward to my senior year and the week of my high school graduation from Irving High. The year was 2012. Out of the blue, I began experiencing excruciating pain in my stomach. I was rushed to the emergency room of a local hospital, where I had emergency surgery due to my appendix rupturing. Somehow, two days after my surgery, I was back in school attempting to take my final exams so I could walk the stage with my classmates. Looking back now, I don't know how I did it, but I managed to pass my finals and also graduated with honors.”

Soon, after Ferman completed high school, he went right into college. During his two years in technical training at Universal Technical Institute, he was also working two jobs and going to school. He explained that he was a cook at a fast food restaurant and an unloader at a freight company.

He was usually working deep nights, about 12 to 14 hours an evening, and going to classes in the mornings. He says that it certainly wasn't easy, but with hard work he proudly graduated and obtained his “ASE” (Automotive and Diesel Technology Certification) with a 3.8 GPA and a 99% attendance rate in college. He completed his schooling in 2014.

“Around 2015,” Ferman said, “My final medical challenge happened while playing in a pick-up basketball game. I had been had been enjoying myself with some of my buddies – just messing around by shooting some hoops. All of a sudden, my leg retracted like a rubber band. I knew nothing was broken but I definitely was aware that something big was wrong.

"I decided to drive myself to the hospital. After some examination, I was told that I had completely destroyed my ACL in my left leg. This serious injury caused many more unwanted health issues. These times for me were very dark periods in my life. And because I was unable to move for weeks on end, I quickly gained 40 pounds while I was immobile.

"As a result, I developed high blood pressure, I was considered pre-diabetic, I started having insomnia, and deep depression came over me, which my doctor said was very unusual with a person of my young age. But I finally became determined that I was not going to let my injury take over my life.”

Boxing changed his life

"The sport of boxing is what saved my life," Ferman continued. "My own personal boxing training started in 2017. I had gotten up to 250 pounds when I started competing in 2018, but I gradually worked my way down in each weight division with every fight. If it wasn't for boxing, I know that I wouldn't have been able to get rid of all the extra weight.”

A couple of years after Ferman’s devastating knee injury, he had begun to self-teach himself the art of boxing. Due to his long days of repairing huge trucks, he was unable to find a gym to work with his challenging schedule. He would train with one of his close friends – Nathan Bell – on the weekends or any time there was availability.

He said he feels very fortunate to have found a gym that was willing to work with his schedule, even though the commute was one and a half hours round trip. R&R Boxing became his workout gym and he became a student of coach Roger Rodas. They very willingly opened their doors for him, and that's when he was able to take it to the next level.

“Many days, after a long 12-hour shift, I would still make time to train three to four times a week and I also sparred two times a week against Golden Gloves champions," Ferman said. "The more I trained, the more I fell in love with the sport. But — you can't just play boxing. This sport is all about skill, determination, and hard work. If you put in the work, the results will speak for themselves.”

This die-hard competitor is still actively competing.

“I started my amateur boxing journey with TBV, and they have seen first-hand my weight loss transformation," Ferman said. "Over the last three years while being in scheduled training, I have managed to lose 78 pounds and I’m still counting. I have hopes and dreams that with hard work and determination, I can go 'pro' someday in the future.”

Ferman is competing in the cruiserweight division.

"When I started my boxing career, I was 250 pounds. At my last fight, I made the weight of 174 pounds. Right now, I am still actively training and I walk around usually at around 185 pounds.”

Sharing his story with others

When asked if he considers himself a role model, he replies, “I would like to think that I am. I definitely want to be that person that people think about when they feel like something is impossible. I think my story shows a lot of resilience, a good work ethic, and perseverance. I try to encourage others that no matter the circumstances, you need to have faith and keep moving forward. When someone might think……. hard worker, goal-oriented, overachiever, then I want them to think of me. I am not trying to brag or anything, but I just want other struggling athletes to know that I am living proof that no matter what obstacles you may face in life, that anything is possible if you believe and work hard enough for it.”

HIS QUOTE: “To be molded, you must first go through the fire” - Tank Ferman

Reason to love it in Waxahachie

Ferman said he thinks he and his family were destined to end up in Hachie. He tells how he and his wife Dalia were going through the house-looking process. Their current home in Waxahachie, was the last one on their list that day. But after being out for hours looking at five or six houses a day for the past few weeks, he admits that he decided he wasn't going to check out that final house.

Something, however, changed his mind, and he expresses how glad he was that they decided to go ahead and make the trip to Hachie. He and his wife immediately fell in love with the house and the city. He says, after that, there was no turning back for them.

Marvin married his high school sweetheart, Dalia Cuellar Ferman, and together they have two little girls. Allison is 3 and Itzel is 1 1/2.